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19th September, 2018

New Guildhall partnership offers music training to every Islington child

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Guildhall School of Music & Drama and Islington Council are launching a new Music Education Hub from October 2018, offering every child in the borough the chance to learn a musical instrument, sing regularly and take part in music ensembles. Students will also be able to engage with the Barbican’s arts and learning programme, in the first such alliance between a local authority, conservatoire and arts centre.

The goal of the new Hub is to ensure that all young people in the borough between the ages of 5 and 18 benefit from high-quality affordable music education, with a focus on students living in challenging circumstances. Every child will be able to take part in whole-class ensemble teaching programmes for a year and to perform regularly, with access to instrument loans or free provision where necessary. Pupils will also sing regularly as part of the area’s choirs and vocal ensembles, and staff will be supported through Continuing Professional Development.

The new scheme builds on Guildhall’s success as the UK’s leading provider of specialist music training for under-18s, which it currently provides through Junior Guildhall and Centre for Young Musicians.

The Guildhall School is provided by the City of London Corporation, who are also the Barbican’s founder and principal funder, and this is part of a wider initiative by the City Corporation to work more closely with Islington Council on shared priorities, including music education.

Lynne Williams, Principal of Guildhall, said, “The Guildhall School is excited to work with Islington Council and to develop this innovative new model for Islington Music Hub. As the School is already the UK’s leading provider of specialist music training at the under-18 level, via Junior Guildhall and Centre for Young Musicians, it seems a very natural progression to work with our neighbours to ensure that young people in Islington receive high quality music education, and we feel we are ideally placed to deliver this. This is also an exciting next step in the creation of the Guildhall School’s Young Artists division which will incorporate all of the School’s under 18s work going forward, and for our creative alliance with the Barbican.”

Sean Gregory, Director of Learning and Engagement for Barbican Centre and Guildhall School commented, “This is such an exciting opportunity to develop a new model for music education and aligns with the School’s vision to help young people find their creative voice. For the last 30 years we have had experience of working in the local area, and through Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning bring together UK and international partners with students and communities in ground-breaking new ways to create inspiring experiences for all. This pioneering cultural alliance between a conservatoire and a world class art centre creates transformative opportunities and will help to equip the talent of the next generation through the new Islington Music Education Hub.”

Read the full press release.

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